ANZAC day has special meaning to Australians and New Zealanders. This can’t be explained solely by the casualty counts – Australia lost 8,709 and New Zealand 2,779 soldiers there, but later in the war these numbers were eclipsed on the Somme, at Messines Ridge and at Passchendaele. As Blair’s previous article postulates, Gallipoli was a nation-building experience for the ANZAC countries. Although the 2020 ANZAC Day was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic, on the eve the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Chorus presented this live video performance of this quintessential Australian song.
The following link will take you to an article by Matthew Cavanaugh that appeared in the Sydney Morning Herald on Anzac Day, April 25, 2020.
We need to catch up with the Education Newsletters regularly issued by the National World War I Museum and Memorial, which we’re always happy to promote. The last two issues are especially timely given the state of current events.
Issued in April, that month’s newsletter covers the subject “Pandemics, Past and Present.” Here’s the link: https://wfly.co/r1OEx
Some good programming for this weekend on C-SPAN3–all times Central as usual.
–1919 Paris Peace Conference. Margaret MacMillan’s keynote at the National World War I Museum and Memorial Symposium gets another airing. 11:40 a.m. on Saturday morning, June 13th.
Some good programs this week on C-SPAN2 & 3, including several repeats on Chad Williams’ excellent talk on African American activism after World War I, and two programs by Margaret MacMillan, including an also excellent talk given at the National World War I Museum and Memorial last November. All times are Central as usual.
The June issue of Smithsonian includes a question about art relating to the 1918 Influenza pandemic. The question and the answer are included in their entirety as follows:
Q: Did painters living during the 1918 influenza pandemic portray the experience?
—Chase Carter | Washington, D.C.
Some, but not many, documented their personal experiences with influenza: In 1918, the Austrian artist Egon Schiele sketched his wife, Edith, and his mentor Gustav Klimt, both of whom succumbed to the flu. Schiele died from it soon after. In 1919, the Norwegian painter Edvard Munch created self-portraits during his illness and after his recovery. Robyn Asleson, a curator at the National Portrait Gallery, says the American artist John Singer Sargent was painting a mural in Europe when he came down with the flu. The 62-year-old recuperated in a French military tent, which he rendered in his 1918 watercolor The Interior of a Hospital Tent. He wrote of “the accompaniment of groans of wounded, and the chokings and coughing of gassed men, which was a nightmare. It always seemed strange on opening one’s eyes to see the level cots and the dimly lit long tent looking so calm, when one was dozing in pandemonium.”